The biggest visual art exhibition Paisley has ever seen – the Big Art Show – will open on Friday 26th August and run until 26th November 2022. The exhibition will take place in The Art Department in the town’s Causeyside Street – a large, open-plan, white-walled, space within the former Allders/Co-op Department Store.


With over 1000 artworks on show, the Big Art Show features painting, drawing, sculpture, photography, digital art, film/video, mixed-media and sound installations.  Artists aged 8-84 from all over the UK have been selected.  This truly open and inclusive exhibition includes work from those with experience as well as budding and emergent artists from all walks of life. Themes in the show include: travel; portraits; nudes; landscapes; Paisley; Glasgow; Italy; abstract; nature; sculpture; ceramics, textiles; photography.

Prizes up to £1000 have been donated to The Big Art Show:

  • Independent Financial Advice Centre (Glasgow) Limited £300
  • Society of Scottish Arts & Outspoken Arts Prize – £200 plus one year’s SSA membership
  • Outspoken Arts Scotland Prize for Digital Art – £150
  • Made in Paisley Prize – £150
  • Duais a’ chon mhòir (The Big Dog Prize) for an artist under 25 – £100
  • Cass Art voucher for a young/school age artist – £50
  • The Art Paisley Prize for Outstanding Work – £100

The organisers behind the exhibition are Outspoken Arts Scotland, a charity first established in 1995.  The Big Art Show has also been supported by Art Paisley Limited – a newly formed charity.  The Board of Directors behind the new charity are well-known Scottish artists, Rowena Comrie; Nancy Doherty; Caroline Gormley; Eoghann MacColl; Angela Pieraccini; Maureen Rocksmore; head teacher Denise MacColl and Steven Thomson, Creative Director, from Outspoken Arts Scotland.

The Big Art Show is also delighted to be partnering with Society of Scottish Artists who will showcase work from their members as part of their annual exhibition.


Running alongside The Big Art Show is an Open Studio section where artists will pop up every weekend and make art live in the space.  There will be a multi-screen digital wall and local schools will be invited to bring parties along to see the show.  There will be a large opening party with 500 attendees expected.

During the duration of The Big Art Show, there will be a twice-weekly free creative learning classes in visual arts.  The full programme can be found at this link. https://outspokenarts.org/artworks-autumn-2022/

Steven Thomson, Creative Director, Outspoken Arts Scotland, commented: “Since working on the Paisley 2021 bid, Outspoken Arts has developed adventurous and ambitious plans for Paisley for those working in its cultural scene.  The Art Department and The Big Art Show along with our friends at PACE Theatre, National Theatre of Scotland, and many local exhibiting organisations, have exciting plans for the site over the next two years. This represents a significant opportunity for those working in the Renfrewshire arts community and a vital time for social and cultural recovery.”

Rowena Comrie, Chair, Art Paisley, commented: “This new venture is a positive addition to the art and cultural achievements associated with Paisley.  The Art Paisley Ltd team are delighted by the incredible response to the Big Art Show and look forward to the challenge of presenting this major exhibition to the art lovers of Paisley.  Our collaboration with the Society of Scottish Artists means that we will offer a further dimension, representing a wider range of Artists and broader contribution to Paisley as an artistic centre.”
The doors will open to public visitors from 26th August and the exhibition will run Tue-Sat, 10am-5pm daily. Most artworks will be for sale.

A full-colour catalogue will be available at the exhibition.
Selected Artists can be found at this link

Meantime you can follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram
@bigartshow / @bigartshow
@artdeptpaisley / @artdeptpaisley
@outspokenartsSC / @outspokenartsSC


Founder of Paisley.org.uk in 1998 and constantly strives to change peoples attitudes to the town, Brian is a self described Paisley Digital Champion who promotes Paisley via any means necessary. You can also follow me on X